Our Whole Star Anise adds visual interest and the strong, sweet, licorice-like flavor of anise to recipes, and can also be used as a garnish.
Ready to use. Add to taste. Can be ground.
Storage & handling
Store in a cool, dry place.
Dried Star Anise.
Star Anise (Illicium vernum) is a spice that closely resembles the anise plant in flavor, but is actually the fruit of a small evergreen tree that is a member of the magnolia family. It is native to southwest China and northeast Vietnam. Star Anise contains anethol, the same compound that gives the unrelated anise plant its flavor.
The spice is used widely in baking due to its warm, sweet flavor, and also plays a key role in long-braised eastern Chinese meat dishes. It especially compliments fatty meats such as duck and pork. In India, the spice is a main ingredient in masala chai and garam masala. It is also an integral seasoning in pho, a Vietnamese noodle soup.
Star Anise has also been used medicinally for the relief of digestive disorders, joint pain and cold or flu symptoms. It has a long history of medicinal and culinary use in Asian countries before its introduction to Europe in the 17th century, where it was most popularly incorporated into flavored syrups, cordials and preservatives.
Chai tea, ubiquitous throughout India and a popular coffeehouse staple in the United States, is actually quite simple to prepare from scratch with a well-stocked spice rack. This sweet-and-spicy beverage combines black tea, cinnamon, star anise, cardamom, black pepper, ginger and steaming milk, making it a wonderfully warming, aromatic cold-weather drink.